With their latest operating system, Windows 8, Microsoft has seriously overhauled the way that users interact with what they know as the PC. You can notice this right from the moment when you boot up the system, as the menu which appeared when you pressed F8 can now hardly be accessed.
What this means is that as soon as you read the “Press F8 for boot menu” message and look for the key, the boot moves on to the next step in the process. Speeding up the boot time is probably one of the reasons on why Microsoft decided to change this feature. Thankfully though, there’s a cool application called Boot UI Tuner that you can use to bring back the menu in one go.
If you want to access the boot settings of the operating system, you now have to specify this in Windows 8 so that it can make the necessary adjustments to the boot process. If you don’t know how to do this yet in Windows 8, here are the steps that you should follow:
- boot up your computer and open the PC settings from the Start Screen menu
- alternatively, press the Windows key and C on your keyboard to open it from the context menu
- click on the General settings button found on the left and then go down until you find an option called Advanced Startup
- once you click on the restart button, your computer will reboot and you will be able to access the F8 Advanced boot menu;
While this feature might not sound so bad after all, practice teaches you otherwise. I’m saying this because if your computer suddenly has a blue screen, the menu in discussion is not accessible any more to load Windows with a previously known good configuration, like for the previously versions of the operating system. What this does to your computer is to be stuck in a constant boot loop as there’s no more F8 feature for boot that you can go to.
Getting back to Boot UI Tuner, I have to mention that it can be used on both 32 and 64 bit versions of Windows 8, except for Windows RT which is not supported. Once you download the application, choose the folder that matches your Windows version and double click on the executable file.
Right from the start, you can clearly understand what the application does as the interface is pretty basic and simple. What’s also great about Boot UI Tuner is that you can tweak these settings as you please and then go back to the default ones from Windows 8, with just a single click.
You can enable one or multiple options and if it’s not that clear what they do, here’s a short description for each one:
- enable advanced options of boot menu: with this enabled, Windows 8 will always display the F8 advanced boot menu, no matter if it selected in the PC Settings or not;
- enable editing of boot options at startup will display a screen that allows you to type in commands for booting up in a specific mode
- enable Windows logo disables or enables the logo on the boot up screen
- enable messages if ticked, will display information about your system so it is recommended that you do not disable this;
- enable loading circle means that the default animation for Windows 8 boot is enabled;
- enable Legacy boot menu. This is the option I’ve been talking about in this article. With it enabled, you can press the F8 key and access the advanced boot menu like you would do in Windows 7 or any other previous version.
Additionally, you can check out the below video for a demonstration of what each feature does.
Download Boot UI Tuner.